Color Hacks for Babe Hair

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Coloring jobs can be intimidating, especially when they’re being performed on human hair extensions. Fortunately, Babe has many resources, tips, and tricks to conquer any coloring exploit with Babe hair. Here, we’ve featured some of our best color hacks for your next color transformation.

Blending existing color shades
One way to update a client’s hair color involves the use of hair extensions alone—no color and no developer, nothing other than pure and simple Babe hair. Select shades from our available collection, then use the hair extensions to simulate the desired look. For example, though Babe may not offer the exact shade of red your client is looking for, you can mix strands of 30/33 (Ruby) and 27/613 (Bridget) to produce the same effect as a single, multi-dimensional red color. This is our traditional extension color method, and it’s a favorite among clients seeking highlights, lowlights, balayages, and even ombres without any color processing.

Coloring extensions to desired level
Custom color can be used to explore the terrain outside of Babe’s existing color collection, making any and every color available to clients. Whether you’re mixing for pastel hair, mermaid-esque locks, an icy silver ‘do, or even the perfect match to your client’s natural hair color, the possibilities of color are basically limitless. The only rules to keep in mind are:
– Use professional, semi or demi-permanent colors, only
– Do not lighten or bleach the hair—only darken
– Perform a strand test first
– Pre-wash extensions with sulfate-free shampoo before coloring them
– Color extensions before installing them
– Stay within two shades of the extension base color (unless you’re working with #60 (Patsy) hair)
– Always flip extensions to color both sides
– Go with the direction of the hair’s cuticle when coloring extensions
– Remove all tape from Tape-In extensions before coloring them
– Use only color-safe, sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner on color-treated hair

Warm-to-warm, cool-to-cool
One tip that we’ve found particularly helpful in the coloring process (though it’s not a hard-and-fast rule, per se) is to stick with the same tone of hair. That means that, if your desired end color is a warm blond, select a warm-colored extension in a lighter shade. Similarly, if your desired end color is a cool medium brown, select a cool light brown to color, so as to preserve the tone of the hair extension. This will produce particularly vivid results.

#60 (Patsy) as an ideal base
When performing more drastic (or imaginative) color transformations, it might be necessary to start with a blank canvas. For Babe, that means choosing our #60 (Patsy) extensions. This shade is one of our lightest and most neutral, making it versatile enough to use in just about any color transformation. It will not have the same staying power as color jobs performed on shades within 2 steps of the end color, but it will have magnificently saturated results! This quality lends itself especially well to pastel, emerald, and fantasy-color jobs.

When in doubt, Color Swatch
If ever you feel uncertain about a color selection, or about the interaction between a color formula and an extension hue, refer to the Babe Color Swatch. It’s a great reference for extension colors, and can be used in a multitude of different ways to facilitate your color job. This March-April, we’re featuring a special Babe Tag promotion with our Color Swatch: get 3 colorful discounts and a free Quick Pick Hair Parter with your purchase of the Color Swatch. Discounts include: a free marketing kit, a free intro DvD, and 10% off your next order. Visit your local distributor to take advantage of the deal!

Did you try any of these tips in your salon? How did it go? Share pictures of your color transformations with us on Babe’s Instagram!

 

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Time for All the Spring Things!

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It’s officially spring! That means it’s time to transition your salon from the variously cozy and crisp styles of winter to the romantic, breezy looks of spring. If that prospect sounds overwhelming to you, or you’re just not sure where to start, don’t worry—Babe is here with some tips to help you through the project!

Lighter, warmer hair colors
Many clients will be coming in for a seasonal update in the next few months, usually to lift their hair to a warmer or lighter hair color. Prepare by stocking up on golden and fawn-like hues and inundating yourself with plenty of inspiration. Our Pinterest boards are a great place to browse popular colors and styles.

Pastel looks
Pastel hair colors are particularly popular at the moment, and besides being refreshing and eye-catching, they’re also seasonally appropriate. Fill your cabinets with #60 (Patsy) Babe hair to custom color Easter-y soft pinks, blues, greens, and purples.

Bridal ‘dos
Spring is basically marriage season, so brush up on some of your favorite bridal looks to ready yourself for any wedding-related appointments. Once you’ve mastered your Kate Middleton-esque ‘dos, you can whip them out for everything from weddings to school dances—they’re actually incredibly versatile!

Salon spring cleaning
Spring cleaning isn’t only for your home—it’s also vital for your salon. Revisit all of your supplies, donating unused items, replacing damaged ones, and upgrading to new equipment when necessary. Deep-clean your tools, chairs, and surfaces for a brand-new feel in your salon. Finally, get acquainted with good upkeep practices to get you through the year until your next spring cleaning.

Inventory update
While you’re cleaning out your salon, take some time to update your Babe hair extension inventory. We regularly add new extension colors, textures, methods, and tools to our collection, so you’re almost guaranteed to have new Babe items on your shopping list each year. You can also attempt to reorganize your extension closet to accommodate the new items.

New sales and promos
Have new Babe items to buy but feeling short on cash? Take advantage of our various Babe promotions! These sales and discounts update every two months, and feature everything from hair extensions to tools to lash extensions, and even education! You can check out our current promotion—the Babe Color Swatch tag discount set plus free Quick Pick Hair Parter—on our Promotions page.

 

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Conquering Consultation Madness

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Sometimes consultations are smooth, speedy affairs. Other times, they’re absolute disasters. To make sure that you’re getting more of the former and less of the latter, take stock of these consultation-specific tips! And, of course, if you have any questions or concerns, get in touch with Babe HQ at 888-840-BABE (2223).

Maintain an organized salon schedule.
An organized salon is a calm and efficient salon, and this reflects on both stylists and clients. Help everyone in the space feel as centered and collected as possible by managing your salon schedule to account for longer-than-expected appointments, lunch breaks, and general breathers. The most important feature of an organized salon schedule? No double-booking!

Focus on one client at a time.
Don’t attempt to conduct a consultation for more than one client at a time. Even if they’re friends or siblings, including another customer in your consultation will divide your attention and compromise the quality of your service. Don’t put yourself in a position where you inadvertently cater more to one client than another, or let your decisions for one client bleed into the next. That being said, it’s perfectly fine to let your client bring a friend or sibling (or whomever) to their consultation so long as they are simply observing or offering moral support.

Have all tools and materials ready beforehand.
Consultations involve some explanation and demonstration, so know what you’re going to cover, and have everything on the scene before your client walks through the door. This could include a Color Swatch (currently featured in our March-April promotion), hair extension samples from various different methods, hair care products, etc. This will allow you to focus on the consultation process, and not on the whereabouts of all your supplies.

Go to the appointment with no expectations.
Even though you’re the experienced party in the hair extension consultation, you’re not the one who calls the shots. Ultimately, it’s the client who determines the success of any service, so it’s their expectations that you should focus on—not your own. The only thing you can do is establish the limits for the service (that is, what is or is not possible in a given situation). So don’t push your ideas onto your client, but rather phrase your opinions as recommendations. Allow the expectations to emerge and evolve gradually over the course of the consultation—as a dialogue between yourself and your client.

Be upfront about all costs, liabilities, and procedures.
Again, consultations are designed to lend clarity to an otherwise complicated process—don’t skip or skim over the necessary discussion of costs and risks. Help your client to be as informed as possible so they can make an assured decision. This will help you in the end, too, as you’ll be able to better meet their expectations and achieve a successful end result.

Gain your client’s explicit approval.
To make sure there are no gaps in communication, and to protect your investment and reputation, have your client literally sign off on all the details of the procedure beforehand. That way, should they come in afterwards complaining about some detail, you can refer back to this agreement to settle the dispute. Revisit the agreement on the day of the service, too, to absolutely ensure that you and your client are on the same page.

Have more consultation tips? Leave them in the comments below! The more the merrier.

 

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How to Make the Most of Your Babe Color Swatch

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No extension consultation is complete without the Babe Color Swatch—a handy little tool featuring 100% Human Remy swatches of all our extension colors (37 and counting!). But did you know you can use the Babe Swatch for more than just choosing shades? Today, we’ll outline some of the lesser-known uses for your Babe Swatch, so you can make the most of it in your salon.

1. Use it to identify your client’s current hair shade. Regardless of whether or not your client is looking for hair extensions, the Color Swatch can be used to identify their current hair color. Incorporate it into your color consultations to help your client describe their own hair color, and gain an understanding of where their hair color sits within a range of shades.

2. Use it to plot your client’s ideal highlight or lowlight shades. The rules of hair extension blending apply to color dimension, too: once you’ve determined your client’s existing hair shade, select a similarly-toned color 2 steps lighter and 2 steps darker as a reference for your highlights and lowlights.

3. Use it to imagine a new hair color for your client. Shades on the Color Swatch can be used for more extensive color transformations, too. Use it as a reference for a new all-over color, first by comparing shades to your client’s skin tone to achieve a perfect complement, then by comparing your color formulation’s test strand to the swatch color for accuracy. Feel free to use multiple swatches for inspiration, too.

4. Purchase extra swatches to create a swatch book for color jobs, or for test strands. Test out how certain color formulations will react with Babe hair extensions by pre-coloring swatches. You can compile these tests into a book for easy perusal, or utilize the swatches directly as test strands for specific color jobs.

5. Use it to help new extension clients feel the quality of 100% Human Remy hair. Since the swatches on the Babe Color Swatch are 100% Human Remy, they look and feel exactly the same as our hair extensions themselves. Take advantage of the similarity and let your clients handle the hair. We’re sure they’ll notice the quality!

6. Use a color swatch or practice hair strand to demonstrate care practices to your client. Again, since the quality of the swatches on Babe’s Color Swatch correlate exactly with Babe’s actual hair extensions, swatches can be used to demonstrate proper hair care practices to your client. Let your clients brush, braid, or even wash the swatches, pretending that the metal clasp is the hair extension bond.

From March-April 2017, Babe is offering our special Babe Tag promotion: enjoy 3 friendly little tags with colorful discounts when you purchase Babe’s Color Swatch. Discounts include: a free marketing kit, a free intro DvD, and 10% off your next order. You’ll also get a free Quick Pick Hair Parter! Head over to your local distributor to take advantage of the offer now.

 

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The Easiest Way to Brush Up on Your Technique

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The beauty industry is ever changing, and sometimes it’s hard to keep up with everything that’s going on. You attend trade shows, enroll in high-level courses, attend distributor events, and even join beauty-related social media groups, taking every opportunity that’s offered for you to develop your skills and expand your career. Yet, even so, you find yourself marveling at the next big thing almost as soon as you’ve mastered the previous one. It’s the perfect environment for stylist fatigue, and a total momentum-killer for newly-budding New Year’s resolutions! That’s why, here at Babe, we make a point of updating not only our Online Education and event offerings, but also our YouTube channel—an easily accessible catalog of concise, quickly digestible videos on everything from installation and removal techniques to new product demonstrations and expert advice for your extensions business. If anything new comes up at Babe, expect to see a video about it!

Some of our most popular videos to date are installation how-tos for each of our core methods: Tape-In, Fusion, and I-Tip. These videos feature a summarized, simplified version of what we teach in our Online Education courses (minus consultation, blending, and subsequent certification), making them an ideal tool for brushing up on your extension technique without any additional financial investment, and no significant time investment (videos are regularly less than 5-minutes long). Refresh your practice from the comfort of your own home, whenever you want!

If you’re hungry for a couple of quick-but-informative videos to get started, we recommend:

The BEST Do’s & Don’ts for Professional Hair Extensions
Why Cutting and Blending Extensions is Important
Hair Extension Consultation Tips | How to Avoid Mishaps with Your Client
How to Dye Hair Extensions | Ombre & Pastel Colors

Enjoy!

 

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Fine Hair vs. Thin Hair

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When you first hear them, the terms “fine” and “thin” hair may sound interchangeable. Stylists and clients alike have a number of “go-to” terms to describe the spectrum of hair types and lengths they encounter. Still, knowing what these terms actually mean can help you best suggest an upkeep regimen for your clients (or tighten the screws on your own) and help dispel hair myths and misinformation. Here’s a quick guide for identifying the characteristic differences between fine and thin hair (because they are not inherently the same!) and helping your clients determine for themselves.

We’re really talking about Density…
For our purposes, hair is characterized in two ways: the thickness of the individual strands and how dense (closely packed together) each of the individual follicles are. When a client has thin hair, it technically means that they have fewer hair follicles packed close together. Terms like “sparse” or “low density” may be more technically accurate and better help describe what they actually mean in these cases. While styling a thin-haired client, you may notice that you see a lot more of their scalp (while working) than someone with thick hair. It is possible for clients with thin hair to also have fine hair, but the two aren’t necessarily related.

Individual Thickness
When a client has fine hair, they’re technically referring to the individual thickness or diameter of each strand. A visual spot test for fine hair is the strand comparison: if a client’s hair strand appears to be the same thickness as a sewing thread then they have coarse hair. If it appears to be thinner than this, or has “wispy” characteristics, then it is fine. Some suggest gathering the hair into a ponytail and measuring its circumference, fine hair being that which is less than 2 inches in circumference. Clients with fine hair may complain that the fineness of their hair makes it difficult to manage and style.

Can Clients have both Thin and Fine Hair?
It’s absolutely possible for clients to have a combination of hair that’s both thin and fine, and in these cases, gentle styling techniques and regular maintenance come highly encouraged. Particular attention should be paid towards braiding or styles which pull the hair away from the scalp as they may be harder on thin or fine-haired clients than those with medium or coarse hair. Babe offers a special Tape-In application alternative for thin and/or fine-haired clients seeking hair extensions, which involves using Single Sided Tape to lighten the overall load of the Tape-In hair extensions (more on that next week!).

To summarize: “Fine” hair refers to the thickness or diameter of the individual strand of hair. The opposite of fine hair is coarse hair. “Thin” hair refers to the overall density of the hair follicles across the scalp. The opposite of thin hair is thick hair. It is possible for clients to have fine and thick hair, or coarse and thin hair. On occasion, your client may have both fine and thick hair. These clients will benefit from the use of our Single Sided Tape method, or from alternative installation techniques designed to target thinning. For more information on the hair extension options available to thin and/or fine-haired clients, visit the Everything But Length Portal.

Helping clients determine how to categorize their hair is the first step towards solid hair health and maintenance on an individual and global level. Not only are you assisting their beauty transformation at the salon but empowering them with the knowledge and information they need to keep it up once they’re on their own.

 

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Simple Ways to Transform Your Business

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It’s the end of 2016. Regardless of how your resolutions for this year turned out, it’s never too late to set yourself up for a good start next year. Today, as our last blog before 2017, we’re going to list some simple things you can do to give your hair extension business a makeover for the new year (we already know that you’re really good at makeovers). So let’s get to it!

Redecorate.
This is a fairly straightforward one—transform your salon space by moving around the furniture, adding some seasonal decorative elements, or some business-specific marketing materials and displays. Not only will this revitalize the salon itself, it’ll also clue your clients in on all the services that you offer.

Update your inventory.
Depending on your inventory management style, you may be overdue for an inventory update. In 2016 alone, Babe introduced a number of new extension methods, colors, and tools, including our Instant Hair line, Flat-Tips, Fusion Cutters, Hair Organizers, Styrofoam Mannequin Heads, and several ombre shades. With all of the new additions, you may find that you’re missing a few revolutionary items in your salon.

Master a new method.
There’s no better way to boost your extension business than to introduce a whole new method to your arsenal. Our Online Education portal is more equipped than ever to teach you the ins and outs of our various extension methods, from I-Tip, Tape-In, and Fusion to Lash extensions. Enroll today for access to the training videos, including Babe certification (if you so choose). Certification in Babe extension methods puts you on our Certified Stylist list, so potential new clients can find you easily from our site. You’ll also be able to provide your clients with more service options.

Introduce Instant Hair services.
Speaking of more service options, Instant Hair extensions provide a load of opportunities to extend new services to your clients, including extension fitting, trimming, and coloring services. We even have an Instant Hair Rewards program to give you more returns for your investment. Learn more about how you can use Instant Hair to enhance your business by clicking here.

Introduce a customer rewards program.
Take a cue from the Instant Hair Rewards program and introduce your own rewards for your most loyal clients. Enable them to collect points for attending all of their recommended maintenance appointments, collecting all of their hair extension upkeep tools, or bringing a friend into the salon. The possibilities are endless.

Reboot your enthusiasm.
Motivation is the best indicator of success, so get back in the hair extension groove by treating yourself to some live Babe events. We offer trade show classes, Mastery Tour events, and even local-level courses with certain Babe distributors, all of which are guaranteed to increase your enthusiasm and improve your extension skills! Connect with fellow Babe stylists and learn in an engaging, fun environment. You can find our next destination right here.

Get a head start on your best extension year ever by following these tips, and let us know how it goes! You can share pictures and stories to any of our social media pages.

Until then, Happy Almost-New Year!

 

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The Wonders of Dry Spray Shampoo

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According to Babe hair extension best practices, clients should be washing their extensions no more than 2-3 times per week (or once a week for curly and wavy extension types). So what’s a client to do if they find their hair getting oily or tacky in-between washes? We have a solution for that: Babe Dry Spray Shampoo.

Our proprietary Dry Spray Shampoo is unique in that it is 100% extension-safe. It’s formulated with absolutely no sulfates for maximum hair health, and it includes minimal alcohol to prevent loss of moisture. Furthermore, unlike many other dry shampoos on the market, Babe Dry Spray Shampoo is not particularly powdery, and does not leave any noticeable residue on the hair. Instead, it leaves behind a light and pleasant vanilla scent that will keep your hair smelling as good as it looks.

We recommend providing your client with an After Care Kit—which includes Babe Dry Spray Shampoo, a Hair Extension Brush, and an aftercare card—following their installation to ensure that they have the tools to properly maintain their hair extensions. Instruct your client to hold the can of Dry Spray Shampoo 12 inches or so away from their hair, and to spray the formula evenly over the scalp area of their head for no more than a couple of seconds. They should then massage the product into their scalp with their fingers, allowing a few moments for it to take effect, then finally brush through their hair with the Hair Extension Brush.

This November-December, Babe is offering a special, limited edition version of our After Care Kit that includes a cute little carrying bag to hold all of the contents! Visit your local distributor by December 31st to check it out.

Got comments or questions? Leave them in the space below, and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

 

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How to Sell After Care to Your Clients

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Hair extension after care is a big deal. In a 2-month window (after the initial installation and before the next move-up appointment), roughly 99.9% of the hair extension process happens outside of the salon—because what’s a 2-hour installation to 1,462 hours of wear? That’s not to undermine the importance of that first hair extension experience; the sustainability of the hair extensions will depend in large part on the quality of the installation itself. But 2 months is a long time—enough to do a lot of good or a lot of harm. So how do you convey the importance of aftercare to your clients, and help them to follow through on it?

We’ve written some tidbits about this before. Check out “How to Make Sure Your Clients Are Taking Care of Their Extensions,” or “Demonstrating Proper Techniques to Your Clients.” This time, though, we’re going to make a more specific recommendation: the After Care Kit. Babe offers a simple, introductory after care product set—complete with a Hair Extension Brush, Dry Spray Shampoo, and a hair care instruction card—to initiate each and every client to the task of maintaining their hair extensions. We encourage stylists to carry this kit in their salons, and even to include it as part of the installation package for first-time extension wearers. With only a couple of items involved, the After Care Kit is the easiest access point to a world of varied and sometimes ornate hair care products, which can be overwhelming to new clients. This November-December, we’re even offering a limited edition version of the kit with a special (and chic!) carrying bag that’ll make the hair care process that much more appealing (visit your local distributor to check it out)!

When you’re showing this kit to a new hair extension client, be sure to mention the following:

Hair care is important even for your natural hair.
Let’s forget about the extensions for a minute and examine your ordinary hair care routine. At the very least, you shampoo, condition, and brush your hair with some regularity. You do this so you can keep your hair looking its best. It’s the same thing for hair extensions, but with a few extra rules.

Hair extensions require their own specific hair care.
Even if your natural hair does well with a common shampoo, a weekly condition, and minimal brushing, your hair extensions are a different story. They’re different from your natural hair, so they’ll need custom treatment. This usually involves scarce washing, frequent conditioning (always below the bonds), mindful product selection (NO sulfates!), and gentle, daily brushing with a hair extension-friendly brush.

You have the power to perfect or destroy your extensions.
The hair extension process doesn’t end when you step out of the salon—it proceeds throughout the duration of your hair extension wear. That’s anywhere from a couple of weeks to 3+ months, depending on your intentions. Needless to say, the after care portion of your hair extension experience easily overshadows the consultation and installation parts, so the damage you do (or prevent) during this period can make or break that initial work.

More than anything, let your client know that they are a key player in their hair extension process! You can do this from the very beginning by encouraging their input and participation during the consultation and installation phases. There’s nothing more beautiful than feeling empowered, and your client will glow a little bit brighter when she realizes that her head of hair is partially her own accomplishment. With resolve like that, there’s no doubt that the hair will stay looking great, too.

Got questions? Leave them in the comments below and we’ll get back to you ASAP!

 

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How to Master Tape-In Updos

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When it comes to styling hair extensions, Tape-In can be a little bit different than I-Tip or Fusion. That’s because, while I-Tip and Fusion extensions are strand-by-strand methods, Tape-In is a weft method, involving a wider piece of hair that lays flush to the head. The weft nature of Tape-In is what makes it so light and comfortable to wear, though it’s also responsible for adding a slight limitation on mobility—especially with up-do hairstyles. But that doesn’t need to be a problem. With a little bit of foresight and a couple of tricks, you can put those Tape-In locks into any shape or position your heart desires. Here’s how:

Ask in advance
During the consultation phase of your hair extension process, ask your client how they’d like to wear their hair while they’re using hair extensions. Get a sense of how your client typically wears their hair, how frequently they style it or change up their style, and figure out if they have any big events coming up that would call for a more specific ‘do. Not only will this give you the information you need for deciding on the best installation strategy (or even method), but it could also pave the way to a pre-scheduled styling appointment for said event.

Round out your parts
If your client likes to throw their hair into an up-do now and then, try taking making your parts a little rounder. Rather than draw a straight line through the hair, draw a slight “U” shape so the part looks like a smile, with the line extending upward toward the ears. That way, when the hair is pulled back, the Tape-In wefts will fold naturally in the direction of the ponytail.

Shimmy your strands
Let’s say your up-do calls for some difficult maneuvering. Rather than brush the extensions upward (which could flatten the hair and emphasize wayward wefts), pull the hair back so that it sits naturally, then gradually shimmy the bundle to your desired place. The Tape-In wefts will respond better to this gentle coaxing, and will therefore blend more easily into the hair. It helps if the style you’re re-creating is somewhat loose, though you can definitely coax the wefts into tauter styles, too (with some patience!).

Hack your styles
Sometimes your up-do can be re-configured to suit the Tape-In placement, rather than the other way around. Whether you’re working with a bridal up-do, a regal bun, or any performance hairstyle, most styles feature many variations that make the look more accessible to women with different hair situations. Try looking online for some inspiration, then let your creativity lead you!

Fill in
When all else fails, you can always use hair fillers—like bun fillers, braid headbands, or even Clip-In extensions—to fake the look that you’re trying to achieve. These tools can sit on top of any unruly or obvious Tape-In wefts, hiding them from view. You can even use these as a guide for the Tape-In extensions, wrapping the Tape-In hair over top so that they lay flat and even. No fuss, guaranteed!

Have you ever styled Tape-In hair into a difficult ‘do? Share your pictures by tagging us on Babe’s Instagram! We love to see your fabulous work!

 

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